Peru Northern Adirondack junior wrestler Justin Kellett is going to have a tough challenge early at the New York State Public High School Athletic Association’s wrestling state championships.
Kellett, who finished the season with a 39-1 record, will open his quest for a title at 160-lbs. with senior Chris Nevinger of Letchworth Friday, Feb. 24, at the Times Union Center in Albany.
Nevinger is a two-time returning state champion, having won the title at 152 last year and at 145 in 2010.
The Section VII contingent of wrestlers did receive several rankings at the state event, with Beekmantown’s Hayden Head (37-2) receiving the second seed in the 285-lbs. weight class when the brackets were announced Saturday, Feb. 18. Head will open his tournament against Robert Salinas of Carle Place, a junior making his first appearance in the state meet.
Former state champion Jacob Goddeau (36-0) of Peru received an eight seed at 132, opening against Matt Herringshaw of Holland Patent. The unseeded senior is 41-5 and making his first appearance at the tournament. If seeds hold, Goddeau would face top seed Wesley Blanding of Chittenango in the quarterfinals. The senior is 36-0 on the season and finished third at 135-lbs. in 2011.
A pair of VII wrestlers received five seeds, with Troy Seymour of Peru (38-0) will open at 170 against Tomasz Filipkowski of Mattituck, who was 1-2 at last years state tournament at 160.
Ben Perry (31-0) of Saranac will also be a fifth seed in a loaded 195-lbs. division. He wil open against Chris Baglivi, also of Mattituck, who is making his first state tournament appearance.
Opening for the Section VII contingent will be Ethan Feazelle (22-8) of Peru, who was not a beneficiary of the draw at 99-lbs., opening with top seed and 2011 runner-up at 96 Joe Nelson of Oxford Academy. The sophomore has a record of 28-1.